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COVID-19: The Long Haul

KGW is shedding light on the stories of five Oregonians experiencing lasting impacts from COVID-19, months after they first got infected.

Morgan Romero

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Nearly a year into the pandemic, there is a lot that scientists, doctors and public health officials around the globe are still learning about the new coronavirus and the disease it causes, COVID-19.

Most people with COVID-19 experience mild or moderate symptoms. People typically recover and return to normal health after two to six weeks, according to the World Health Organization.

But for a growing number of patients, symptoms may linger for weeks or months following their initial infection and, for many, symptoms change. 

Some patients, including those with no underlying chronic medical conditions, develop issues that could have lasting health effects for an indeterminate amount of time. Worldwide, these people have been referred to as "long-haulers", or as experiencing "Long COVID." 

According to the CDC, relatively little is known about the course of the disease and the return to normal health for people who experience a mild form of it.

KGW is shedding light on the stories of five Oregonians experiencing lasting impacts from COVID-19. Many of them were diagnosed early on in the pandemic and, months later, are still experiencing issues including fatigue, brain fog, confusion, shortness of breath, headaches and/or chest pain. 

Most have no underlying health issues and experienced a mild form of the disease. They also have mild long-term effects compared to some other long-haulers.